Bootstrap methods for the empirical study of decision-making and information flows in social systems

DeDeo, Simon, Hawkins, Robert, Klingenstein, Sara and Hitchcock, Tim (2013) Bootstrap methods for the empirical study of decision-making and information flows in social systems. Entropy, 15 (6). pp. 2246-2276. ISSN 1099-4300

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Abstract: We characterize the statistical bootstrap for the estimation of information theoretic quantities from data, with particular reference to its use in the study of large-scale social phenomena. Our methods allow one to preserve, approximately, the underlying axiomatic relationships of information theory—in particular, consistency under arbitrary coarse-graining—that motivate use of these quantities in the first place, while providing reliability comparable to the state of the art for Bayesian estimators. We show how information-theoretic quantities allow for rigorous empirical study of the decision-making capacities of rational agents, and the time-asymmetric flows of information in distributed systems. We provide illustrative examples by reference to ongoing collaborative work on the semantic structure of the British Criminal Court system and the conflict dynamics of the contemporary Afghanistan insurgency.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: biological systems; cognition; social systems; information theory; statistical estimation; bootstrap; Bayesian estimation
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > History
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA History of Great Britain > DA020 England
Q Science > Q Science (General) > Q0300 Cybernetics > Q0350 Information theory
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > ZA Information resources > ZA4080 Digital libraries
Depositing User: Timothy Hitchcock
Date Deposited: 02 Jul 2014 14:49
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2019 01:30

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